Cutting Edge

I’ve been interested in how the conditions for innovation can be created in organizations for a long time, especially in those that are not very innovative. So, I’ve been intrigued by the writing of John Hagel and John Seely Brown and their thoughts on the importance of “edges” and how edges can transform what they […]

Teacher as Learner: I’ve Got Questions

Your school makes a major move, a large scale disruption away from normal. How will teachers get ready for this?  What’s the conversation surrounding that change sound like? You hear things like:  When will training occur?  Who will be doing the training?  Will I get paid for attending the training?  Is training mandatory? How much […]

Are Your Students Ready?

One of the first questions asked when a school goes 1:1 is about how they will prepare teachers for the big change about to happen. I’m wondering if the better question would be about preparing their students. How comfortable are your students with the way in which learning now occurs in your school? Do they […]

Words Matter | Design Thinking

If you could identify the single most important factor that is missing in schools, what would it be? For me, it’s an easy call. Imagination. I think schools can be imaginative, and have that capacity in their DNA, but its buried and hidden under the things that schools have to deal with in their current […]

The Culture of a Learning Experience

If you were asked to identify the most important elements of your school’s culture, what would they be?  I’m talking about the things that make your school your school, the things you are most proud of. Take a minute and write down your top three. Your answer is important.  Perhaps you wrote about how students […]

Your Climate Your Culture

The climate and the culture of your school are not the same thing. The culture of a school is represented by its shared beliefs, it’s ceremonies, its nuances, the traditions, and the things that make the school unique.  School culture takes a great deal of time to create.  It doesn’t happen overnight.  It happens over years. The […]

Words Matter | Report Card

Written at Educon, January 27, 2013 Report Card. Definition:  An object for communicating performance, typically from school to parent, based on five letters of the alphabet.  Traditionally delivered by mail and then intercepted by crafty and wiley students. For me, the report card joins the rank of those things I consider to be legacy elements […]

Test Kitchen

What’s your library like? If it’s like most school libraries, that’s a pretty obvious answer -books, tables, circulation desk, some reference stations, a computer lab or two – you get the picture. There’s nothing wrong with that of course.  What I’ve just described has worked for a long time and has served schools and students […]

Preparing for New Learning Spaces

What will you design? I recently received a request to discuss my ideas on what a school district should consider when preparing to build a new school.  As you might expect for any school district, developing an answer to this question is a daunting and challenging task but one that should be met with the […]

Developing the Design Mind

Over the past two years, I’ve challenged myself to develop an understanding of the design thinking process.  Most of my work has been long hours of independent study, but my grasp on the process has been greatly aided and influenced by working with Christian Long, Trung Le, and Melanie Kahl of The Third Teacher+, Laura […]